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Illinois Comptroller

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Illinois Comptroller
General information
Office Type:  Partisan
Office website:  Official Link
2012 FY Budget:  $109,800,600
Term limits:  None
Length of term:   4 years
Authority:  Illinois Constitution, Article V, Section 1
Selection Method:  Elected
Current Officeholder

Name:  Leslie Munger
Officeholder Party:  Republican
Assumed office:  January 12, 2015
Compensation:  $135,669
Next election:  2016
Last election:  November 4, 2014
Other Illinois Executive Offices
GovernorLieutenant GovernorSecretary of StateAttorney GeneralTreasurerAuditorComptrollerSuperintendent of EducationAgriculture DirectorInsurance DirectorNatural Resources DirectorLabor DirectorIllinois Commerce Commission
The Comptroller of the State of Illinois is the chief financial officer of the government of Illinois. The comptroller is an elected position selected by voters during the federal midterm elections (i.e. 2018, 2022, 2026 and 2030).

Current officeholder

The current officeholder is Leslie Munger (R), who was appointed on January 12, 2015, by Gov. Bruce Rauner (R). Munger replaced interim comptroller Jerry Stermer, who was appointed on December 19, 2014.[1] The office was vacant for 10 days prior to Stermer's appointment following the death of former state controller Judy Baar Topinka. Topinka was first elected in November 2010 and served until December 9, 2014, when she passed away due to complications from a stroke suffered the previous day. Topinka won a new term in the 2014 elections.[2]

Filling vacancy after election

The process of filling the vacant comptroller's office generated discussion about how to fulfill appointment requirements in the Illinois Constitution. The governor is tasked with filling vacancies in state executive offices, though the length of the appointment is up for debate. A scenario that gained support from legislative leaders and analysts involved appointment of an interim comptroller by outgoing Gov. Pat Quinn (D) through the remainder of Topinka's previous term ending in January 2015. State Senate President John Cullerton (D) called for a special election in 2016 to prevent Munger from serving a full term intended for an elected official.[3]

Quinn called for a special session of the Illinois State Legislature to convene on January 8, 2015, to address the possibility of a special election for the remainder of Topinka's new term. Quinn and Attorney General Lisa Madigan (D) advocated for a 2016 special election in order to give the public a chance to replace Topinka. Rauner and Republican state legislators countered that a constitutional amendment was the only legal path to a special election.[4] On the first day of the special session, legislators approved a bill requiring a special election in 2016 for the comptroller's office. This bill, signed by Quinn prior to leaving office, requires special elections for vacancies in the offices of attorney general, secretary of state, comptroller and treasurer.[5]


The office of comptroller is authorized by Article V, Section 1 of the Illinois Constitution.

Article V, Section 1

Officers: The Executive Branch shall include a Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Comptroller and Treasurer elected by the electors of the State. They shall keep the public records and maintain a residence at the seat of government during their terms of office.


Here is a list of the standard qualifications necessary under Illinois state law in order to be considered for the comptroller's office:


Illinois state government organizational chart

According to Article V, Section 2 of the state constitution, comptrollers shall hold office for four years beginning on the second Monday of January after their election and until their successors are qualified. The office was elected in the general election in 1978 and every four years thereafter.


See also: Illinois down ballot state executive elections, 2014
Illinois Controller, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngJudy Baar Topinka Incumbent 49.6% 1,775,983
     Democratic Sheila Simon 45.7% 1,636,593
     Libertarian Julie Fox 4.8% 170,534
     Nonpartisan Write-in votes 0% 176
Total Votes 3,583,286
Election Results via Illinois State Board of Elections.


Article V, Section 7 of the Illinois Constitution addresses vacancies in the office of comptroller. If the comptroller...fails to qualify or if his office becomes vacant, the Governor shall fill the office by appointment. The appointee shall hold office until the elected officer qualifies or until a successor is elected and qualified as may be provided by law and shall not be subject to removal by the Governor.


The comptroller's main duties include maintaining the state's fiscal accounts, ordering payments into the treasury and issuing warrants against any funds held by the treasurer.

The specific duties of the comptroller are outlined in Article V, Section 17 of the Illinois Constitution.

Article V, Section 17, Comptroller - Duties: "The Comptroller, in accordance with law, shall maintain the State's central fiscal accounts, and order payments into and out of the funds held by the Treasurer."


The comptroller's office is further split into six departments:[6]

  • The taxpayer information and consumer affairs department
  • The cemetery care department
  • The local government department
  • The public accountability
  • The research and fiscal department
  • The electronic commerce department

State budget

See also: Illinois state budget and finances

The budget for the Office of the State Comptroller in Fiscal Year 2012 was $109,800,600.[7]


See also: Compensation of state executive officers

The salaries of elected executives in Illinois are determined by the Illinois State Legislature as mandated in the state constitution. Article V, Section 21 of the Illinois Constitution also notes that executives cannot receive additional compensation beyond their salaries nor can their salaries be changed during current terms:

Article V, Section 21 of the Illinois Constitution

Text of Section 21:


Officers of the Executive Branch shall be paid salaries established by law and shall receive no other compensation for their services. Changes in the salaries of these officers elected or appointed for stated terms shall not take effect during the stated terms.[8]


In 2014, the comptroller received a salary of $151,035, according to the Council of State Governments.[9]


In 2013, the comptroller received a salary of $139,669, according to the Council of State Governments.[10]


In 2012, the comptroller was paid an estimated $135,669, according to the Council of State Governments.


In 2010, the comptroller was paid an estimated $135,700, according to the Council of State Governments.[11]

Historical officeholders

Note: Ballotpedia's state executive officials project researches state official websites for chronological lists of historical officeholders. That information for the Illinois Comptroller has not yet been added because the information was unavailable on the relevant state official websites, or we are currently in the process of formatting the list for this office. If you have any additional information about this office for inclusion on this section and/or page, please email us.

Recent news

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Illinois Comptroller - Google News Feed

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Contact Information

Main Office
201 Capitol
Springfield, IL 62706-0001

Phone: (217) 782-6000

See also

External links

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